Sidney Crosby aware this could be last run for Pens’ core: ‘Not going to last forever’

 Sidney Crosby has played 16 of his 17 NHL seasons for the Pittsburgh Penguins as part of a core with Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang.

That could soon change.

Crosby understands the Stanley Cup Playoffs might be the core’s final chance to win the Stanley Cup for the fourth time. Malkin and Letang each is in the final season of an eight-year contract and can become an unrestricted free agent. 

“As much as you don’t want to think about it, it’s something that you understand could be a possibility,” Crosby said. “I think you just try to enjoy it as much as you can and try to take it all in because you know it’s something that’s not going to last forever, whether it’s this year or down the road a little bit more.

“You only get to play for so long, so I think just trying to enjoy it and be grateful for the opportunity that we have to do it again.” 

The Penguins (45-25-11) are one point ahead of the Washington Capitals for third place in the Metropolitan Division and end the regular season against the Columbus Blue Jackets at PPG Paints Arena on Friday (7 p.m. ET; ATTSN-PT, BSOH, ESPN+, NHL LIVE). They made the playoffs for a 16th straight season, the longest active streak in the NHL, and will play the New York Rangers or Florida Panthers in the Eastern Conference First Round beginning May 2 or 3.

Crosby, the Penguins captain, is signed through the 2024-25 season. He missed the playoffs as a rookie in 2005-06, his only NHL season without Malkin and Letang. 

Author: Lucy Green